Tabletop Tyrant MODERN PPTQ Leicester

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Modern format. registration. £15 entry.

64 players max.

Tournament begins at 9.45 am

Metered street parking outside multi-storey car park 300 metres away. Only £4 for the day.

Minimum Prize 2 Booster boxes for the top 1/3 of the event.

For every player over 16 entrants 4 boosters will be added into the prize pool.

We have two raffle prizes for players that pre-register, Horizon Canopy and Grove of the Burnwillows, together worth around £60.

Here is the link for the tickets;



Rees’ Pieces #12: PT Dragons of Tarkir

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As I write this I've just finished watching the finals of Pro Tour Dragons of Tarkir. As much as I was cheering for Shota Yasooka to take the title, he was the last in line to get ran over by RG aggro and Pro Tour DTK champion Martin Dang. Dangs been on a tear recently just coming off of a win at Grand Prix Liverpool a month or so back. Congratulations to Martin.


Running up to this event I've been more excited than for any Pro Tour I can remember. Dragons brought a load of new interesting cards into the format and the possibilities seemed crazy. While there have been a couple off Standard tournaments since release no-one was really breaking new ground, the super teams trying to break the format saved all of their best for the Pro Tour. Everyone new that the format was still very undiscovered, a paradise for brewers and deckbuilders everywhere. Let's have a look at what's made it big in Brussels:

I think the biggest story coming out of the Swiss is the success of blue control decks, either Blue/Black, Blue/White or Esper and that's the majority of what I'd like to discuss today. These decks got a bunch of new tools from Dragons of Tarkir, I'll just run you through the list of new Toys they have to play with:

Dragonlord Ojutai

This guys been seeing more and more play since release, in both UW and Esper control and then even in other decks as a high quality finisher. It protects itself until you find a way to protect it and can start swinging in to gain card advantage and finish off your opponent. The clock this guy lays down is very real, and the pressure it applies against other slow decks is great as it both hits them and draws you cards while only being exposed to removal when you want it to be.


Dragonlord Silumgar

Dragonlord Silumgar
Not seeing a lot of play straight after coming out, we saw it as a one of in Reid Dukes Sultai Reanimator deck from the Invitational a few weeks ago. While it wasn't played by a lot of the control decks this weekend Shota Yasooka played two copies main deck and it really did some work. In the top 8 we saw him play one to steal a Surrak the Hunt Caller, giving it haste to attack for lethal. Its immune to a lot of the cheap removal in the format, allowing it to stabilize by itself against a lot of aggro decks, but then also does a huge job in the midrange and control decks stealing planeswalkers or powerful creatures while providing a big flying blocker with deathtouch they have to get around.



This ones a tricky one. There were 3 UB control decks in the top 8, one splashing white for Ojutai. Of these Andre Ohlschwager was the only one to play 4 copies of Anticipate in his main deck; both Andrew Sullivan and Shota Yasooka choosing not to play the card at all. Its a very good magic card, but a lot of the time in the control decks we've seen you just need raw card advantage to pull you ahead or stabilize and you need to be casting Bile Blights and Ultimate Prices early in the game. It does a good job of smoothing out your draws though, and will almost always give you a good card for the situation out of the 3 you see. Taking land off of it is completely fine early game so don't be afraid to.


Foul Tongue Invocation


This is the first of the 'dragon reveal' cycle that I'm going to talk about, and these cards really broke out in a big way at the Pro Tour. Firstly its an instant speed edict effect which the format was lacking, helping out against decks like UW/x Heroic with all of their protection spells or Abzan Aggro with its plethora of hard to handle creatures like Rakshasa Deathdealer of Fleecemane Lion. The life gain is super relevant though helping you buy more time to get to late game where you can start casting Dig Through Times, Perilous Vaults and Crux of Fates. Especially against Mono Red or RG aggro decks where they're playing Hordeling Outbursts and Dragon Fodder the life gain helps this card still be relevant even if they have plenty of 1/1s to sacrifice.


Silumgars Scorn


I just mentioned how the Dragon Reveal cycle has proved to be very good, and this is arguably the best. Counterspell is back! Kinda. If your opponents playing on curve this is a virtual counterspell, and if they want to pay around it they give you more time to just find the dragon to turn it into an actual counterspell. This card might be one of the most defining in the new standard format (and tilting people's great too).


Icefall Regent


This dragon was far from the most hyped up from Dragons of Tarkir (which is fair given the cycle of mythic Dragonlords), but it proved to be a all-star in Shota's deck. With all the 'dragon reveal' cards it gives you an incentive to play a bunch more dragons and you can't really jam 4 copies of Silumgar (either) without making the deck real clunky. It does a reasonable job of protecting itself from removal making your opponent really commit to dealing with it, and the Dungeon Geist ability helps you stabilize vs aggro decks trying to run you over.


Dragonlords Prerogative


As far as mirror breakers go this is a damn good one. While 6 mana for 4 cards is a tad underwhelming against a lot of the field in a control mirror this card is insane. With the ability to make it uncounterable revealing a Dragon, its just an 'I win the game' card against other control decks where you just want more cards than your opponent. Again, a six mana draw spell isn't exactly what you want against Mono Red or Abzan Aggro but playing a couple in your 75 seems like a good idea.


I can't really talk about decks from the Pro Tour without discussing the winning deck right? So here's Martin Dangs RG aggro list:

4 Foundry Street Denizen
1 Frenzied Goblin
2 Goblin Rabblemaster
1 Lightning Berserker
4 Monastery Swiftspear
3 Zurgo Bellstriker
4 Dragon Fodder
4 Hordeling Outburst
4 Atarka's Command
1 Become Immense
4 Lightning Strike
4 Stoke the Flames
4 Wild Slash
4 Mana Confluence
1 Temple of Abandon
4 Wooded Foothills
1 Forest
10 Mountain

2 Goblin Rabblemaster, 4 Eidolon of the Great Revel, 1 Goblin Heelcutter, 1 Destructive Revelry, 2 Hall of Triumph, 4 Roast, 1 Scouring Sands

It looks like a fairly typical mono red deck splashing green for 4 copies of Atarka's Command and a Become Immense main deck. This kind of deck really preys on the slower decks in the format, as you can see from his top 8 matches.  The two new cards that I'd like to focus on from the deck are Atarka's Command and Zurgo Bellstriker. Command is excellent in this deck (Dang described it as 'the best card') going to the dome, pumping your team or stopping the life gain from a Siege Rhino or Nyleas Disciple the card just does everything you want, and is the real reason you're splashing green in your otherwise Mono Red deck.


Zurgo is another important card. It gives you a 2 power 1 drop on turn 1 and also allows you to play it as a threat without commiting to the board later. Traditionally this deck has fantastic game 1s, and then post board the opponent brings in their Anger of the Gods and Drown in Sorrows and you have a much tougher time winning games 2 and 3. Now because of all the Dash creatures in the deck it really allows you to play into these with impunity. Going 1 drop into T2 dash guy and their Drown in Sorrow is just a one for one removal spell. Dangs deck looks to be really well positioned going forward, and definitely one to look out for.

Once again that's it for me for now, thanks for reading and I hope I've given you some kind of insight into the new control cards from Dragons of Tarkir and they're functions in decks going forwards.


Rees’ Pieces #11 – Here be Dragons

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Liverpool has been and gone and now I have three more events to look at going to: Grand Prix Utrecht, Grand Prix Lille, and Grand Prix London. On top of this there are PPTQs to play, and the MtgUK Eternal Championship in May. Before GP Liverpool I came to the decision that unless I cashed the event I wouldn't travel to play in Utrecht, between the costs of flight and hotel it just didn't seem worth it; especially with the Modern Masters 2 limited I could be playing at home anyway. Lille however is much more reasonable and I do love Legacy so that's a trip I will be making. That aside however my main focuses at the moment are Standard and Modern for PPTQs.

Modern Masters 2 huh, its shaping up to be pretty cool. Tarmogoyf is getting another much needed reprint, and Karn Liberated, Etched Champion as well as Emrakul the Aeons Torn are also confirmed. The release weekend coincides with the UK eternal event I mentioned earlier which is handy as it means MM draft side events all weekend (yay!). Here's hoping the limited format is as good as the last Modern Masters.


Moving on to discuss the new standard format and the meat of this article, post Dragons of Tarkir standard looks awesome. That is all... No really.  The sets out, prereleases have gone, and tournament results are starting to come through so its time to get stuck in. I’m not going to go through everything I think is good and playable, but instead highlight a few cards I’d like to discuss. Yes Deathist Raptor is a good card, but its not got me excited to play standard like some of these have:

Anafenza, Kin Tree Spirit - Far from a vanilla bear, Anafenza has a very powerful effect, unfortunately she is not a warrior but she might be a key player in a mono white or W/X aggro deck in standard. Curving Anafenza into Anafenza sounds tricky but troublesome for your opponent. Its worth noting that she also does a Melira impression with Kitchen Finks while being a better stand alone creature, while Pod has been banned this might still do something. We'll have to wait and see.



Arashin Foremost - This dude is a warrior and a sweet one at that, very Silverblade Paladin-esque. In a BW warrior deck this guy seems insane. He’s a good 3 drop to curve into a Mardu Strike Leader or Surrak the Hunt Caller and can lead to some mighty beatings. The double white in its mana cost is restricting but I imagine this will be a played card in some decks. At this point I’d also like to point out that Goblin Rabblemaster is a Goblin Warrior.

Arashin Foremost


Avatar of the Resolute - There are a few important things to note about this card. Firstly its a 2 mana 3/2 which is a decent body for an aggressive creature. Secondly it has GG in its mana cost adding devotion for cards like Aspect of the Hydra and Nylea, God of the Hunt, and thirdly it has trample to push damage through from cards like the aforementioned Aspect or Become Immense



Anticipate - If we ignore Dig Through Time and Treasure Cruise this is probably the most powerful library manipulator we've had in standard since Ponder was reprinted in M12. Its almost certainly going to change the way control decks are built in standard giving them more turn two plays and allowing them to cut down on lands (no more 3 lands off of my Ingenuity, grrrr...). It allows them to dig for the specific answers they need earlier, not to mention that in a format with delve spells cheap cantrips get better. It also looks like it could see some modern play in combo decks like Scapeshift or Splinter Twin or even maybe in UWx control decks.



Collected Company - 4 mana, 2 dudes, instant speed, seems purty good if you ask me. This is the card that currently has me thinking about it the most in the set for standard and modern. In a deck like Abzan Aggro this card might even be better than Siege Rhino, and the fact that its an instant you can hold up for your opponents turn against control is great. I have a magical christmas land where I cast this hitting a pair of Mantis Riders but I won't go too far down that rabbit hole. The larger the card pool the better this kind of effect becomes and the possibilities for this card in Modern are very exciting.



Contradict - I'd just dismiss this card as unplayable but there's a chance it'll be a one of in some kind of control deck. I'll be honest I just wanted to make pun of it.



Hate Cycle - These are a set of very powerful colour hosers, Rending Volley for sure (Screw Twin, no really) and perhaps one or two of the others making it over into Modern. The worst of the cycle for Standard is probably Display of Dominance; UB doesn't have a swathe of non-creature permanents, and two mana for a Gods Willing isn't great. The rest I would expect to see a lot of sideboard play, Surge of Righteousness against the Red or Black aggressive decks and similarly Encase in Ice against the Red Green Aggro decks that have been popular recently. I really like UW Heroic still, so hopefully no-one plays Self-Inflicted Wound.



Myth Realized - This one is super interesting. It works a bit like a Glint Hawk Idol without flying but with a few key differences. Firstly it costs a single mana to play, this isn’t hugely relevant until you take its ability to grow whenever you cast a noncreature spell which lets you play it early and then let it sit and grow while you play a control or tempo game. There are multiple places this card could go, and its far from a definite player in the new standard format but there are some cool possibilities either in control, tempo, or maybe even a combo deck. Anticipate being printed also gives this card a boost, as it gives us a cheap cantrip we can play.



Surrak, the Hunt Caller - This guy is a sweet addition to Green based aggro decks, often coming in as a four mana 5/4 with haste and then giving the creatures you play haste for the foreseeing future. He is a warrior which leads to a nice synergy with Arashin Foremost for a brutal curve of creatures. Also, he adds two devotion to Green which lends itself to a mono Green aggro deck utilizing Nylea, God of the Hunt, Reverent Hunter, and Aspect of Hydra. Starting pretty low on the pricing scale he’s slowly starting to creep up.



Sidisi, Undead Vizier - Now this is the last card I’m going to discuss today and part of the reason why is that I’m currently watching Reid Duke and Jacob Wilson do a nsidisiumber on people with it in the Top 8 of the SCG Invitational. At first I thought the card looked fine, but not great but I didn’t see the full potential of the card. In the BGx midrange decks, you want to play a card like Satyr Wayfinder to help hit cards and enable graveyard interactions with cards like Tasigur and Murderous Cut. Previously after that he just sat around after getting his value until eventually being chucked in the way of something as a chump blocker, now Wayfinder gives you a body lying around that you can trade in with Sidisi for the best card in your deck at the time whatever that may be. Reid is even playing it in a Sultai Reanimator shell where you can get extra value by sacrificing a card like Hornet Queen or Reclamation Sage for you to then bring back with Whip of Erebos giving you even more insane value.

And once again that's going to be it from me this week, hopefully I’ve been able to give you an insight into my thoughts on the cards above. Next week I’ll be looking at a few decklists for the new standard format looking towards Pro Tour Dragons of Tarkir. Thanks for reading,